mosswitchOctober 20, 2010

I think my plant of choice for 2011 is going to be asters. I love them in my fall garden, and want more, lots more! I am planning on plugging them in everywhere they will fit, all kinds but especially the blues and purples. What is yuour favorite aster?

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marquest(z5 PA)

I agree they are a great Fall bush. I have two that I purchased at the grocery store last year. I am saving the seeds and I am going to try and divide one and see if it works, Like you I want them everywhere next Fall.

I someone posted a red one that was gorgeous. I asked for seeds for that one also.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2010 at 10:40PM
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coolplantsguy(z6 Ontario)

There was a pic in a recent post with 'October Skies' -- it looks like a beauty. I must get!

    Bookmark   October 21, 2010 at 7:30AM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

The rabbits ate most of my asters this year. The couple in my fenced in veg bed are in full bloom as is the Alma Potchke in the front bed but the rest are short leafless stems.

I sprayed repellent but was gone for awhile and the rain washed it away.

Fortunately they don't eat mums.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2010 at 11:59AM
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coolplantsguy(z6 Ontario)

I also use to be a big fan of the dark-leaved forms of A. lateriflorus, namely 'Prince' and 'Lady in Black'. I had one of them in a previous garden and found it quite useful.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2010 at 12:38PM
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coolplantsguy(z6 Ontario)

Does anyone grow 'Starshine' (a variety of A. ageratoides)?

    Bookmark   October 21, 2010 at 2:14PM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

I grow a lot of Aster varieties but lost most of them in an unusually wet winter a couple of years ago, I still have a few left the ones that come to mind I still have are Davey's True Blue, Ada Ballard, Snow Flurries (late blooming ground hugging trailer), Fuldatal, Little Man in Blue, Purple Dome, October Snow, Blandie, Adrienne, Blue Eyes, Harrington's Pink, Blue Lagoon, Pink Star, Pink Winner, September Ruby and a few more. I think Asters are my favorite flowers, they put on such a beautiful show in the fall. I have a few more but the names are eluding me at the moment.

Asters are so easy to propagate from soft wood or root cuttings in the spring, a fast way to increase your favorites.


    Bookmark   October 21, 2010 at 4:51PM
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ontnative(5b Can/USDA 4)

One of my favourites is Aster laevis 'Bluebird'. Very deep rich blue-purple colour, no mildew and minimal staking. The species A. laevis is almost as good. The New England asters are lovely, but don't open their flowers in cloudy weather or too much shade. Another favourite species one is A. oolentangiensis, also known as A.azureus in some older references. A.turbinellus (prairie aster) is also an easy one. So many of the hybrid ones are mildew-prone unless grown in perfect conditions and occasionally sprayed.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 11:52AM
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ontnative(5b Can/USDA 4)

CPG, the Aster asteroides cultivar you mentioned 'Sunshine' may not be readily available in North America yet. I haven't seen it at my local nurseries, and the only info on the net I could find on it or even on A.asteroides (species) was from Europe, India, Japan etc.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 12:19PM
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hostadom(US 4 Ag Can 6)

I bought a couple of Peachie's Pick this summer. One is the typical Peachie's Pick color and has been bloomed continuously for the past couple of months and still bloomning with vigor. The other has a deeper/nicer coloration but it's flowers haven't been opening since I got it. Hopefully it will come back strong next year. It was the only one that was darker than the 100 or so they had in stock and will be a real stunner if it decides to bloom.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 12:23PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

This one is Professor Kippenburg. I'm in zone 2b and it does great. Compact and extremely floriferous, blooms with ease through frosts. The color is very nearly flurescent. I also recommend aster is sort of fushia pink and extremely bright, with the same growth habit as this one.

Here is a link that might be useful: Professor Kippenburg

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 12:39PM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

Old Court Nurseries in England has one of the largest collections of Asters I know of. I've given a link to their website, lots of great info on Asters. You can also see some of the Aster beds in full bloom, click on the garden tour located on the home page, enjoy but have a cloth ready to wipe the drool off your keyboard :).


Here is a link that might be useful: Old Court Nurseries

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 1:14PM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

Oooops, the tour is on the Picton Garden page not the home page.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 1:23PM
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ontnative(5b Can/USDA 4)

aftermidnight, it is too bad Paul Picton has his nursery in the UK, or I would surely be ordering some of his lovely asters. Only a few of his varieties seem to be available in Canada.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 11:09AM
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coolplantsguy(z6 Ontario)

Just to clarify, it is 'Starshine', not 'Sunshine', and it is A. ageratoides not A. asteroides. In any case, as far as I can tell, it has been available in North America (I've grown 1000 plants each of the last two years at the nursery... just haven't planted one in my garden yet), for the past few years. Of course, that doesn't mean it is widespread. ;)

    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 1:13PM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

Ontnative, I did order from Paul Picton a few years back, it was very involved as the only way he could ship them was as bare root cuttings and the window for doing so was very short. To make a long story short I finally received the cuttings after our canadian postal system killed the first lot, I don't think Paul wants to go that route again.

The sad thing about the whole affair is I offered share starts with anyone interested but got very few takers, I lost most of them in a very wet winter a couple of years ago so I can't even beg cuttings back. I still have several asters that came from Paul and think I should get my butt outside and pot some divisions up and store them in the greenhouse for the winter, just in case.
If you contact me next march if I still have them I'll give you a list of what I still have, I might be able to send you a few root cuttings. Davy's True Blue, (not really a true blue) is one of the taller favorites of mine. Quite showy IMO.


    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 1:34PM
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Hello Coolplantsguy,
I purchased Aster 'Starshine' in France last spring, and it did behave vey nicely this fall. It remains pretty erect, some 2 ft high.
I had expected it to start blooming very early (so had said the nurseryman when I had bought it), like A. x frikartii Mönch.
The buds did appear early in August:

But the blooms started only early in September peak in end september/ early october:

It is still blooming these days, and the rain didn't seem to affect the flowers very much...unexpected good news for a white Aster!
This "not-so-early" blooming time might be due to the fact that it was its first year...time will tell!
Did you wish to know anything else?

    Bookmark   October 25, 2010 at 10:44AM
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tepelus(6a SW MI)

I have three plants I bought from Bluestone three years ago, 'Hella Lacey', that have yet to bloom for me. The three plants, growing together in a clump, get nice and full, and the foliage nice, but never any flowers, and I'm about to pull them out. Right now they're getting powdery mildew. I'm thinking next spring to plant them where they'll get full sun, right now it's mostly light shade, which could be my malfunction. If no flowers next fall, to the compost heap they go.

However...I plan to purchase some wild aster seeds, a couple different varieties, and see how they do. I see so many of the whites and purples in bloom right now, and they are so pretty, especially the purple. I'm half tempted to collect seeds from the plants growing in the field at the hotel I work, if I can keep track which plants are the asters (there are several right on the edge of the field where the grass meets) when the flowers fade. The field is owned by the owners of our hotel, so I don't think they'll have issues with me taking some seeds, especially since that pretty field will soon be one day transformed into another hotel.


    Bookmark   October 25, 2010 at 3:57PM
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Aster oblongifolius * is a personal favorite, just coming into peak bloom in my garden right now (it typically flowers well into November). For some reason it shifted about three feet to the west this year, disappearing from its usual spot but is bigger and better than ever.

"October Skies" is a relative of this plant.

*the name is often misspelled "Radon's Favorite" or something similar. Not as bad as people misspelling a popular Rudbeckia as "Goldstrum" (instead of "Goldsturm"), but still gratingly wrong.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2010 at 5:54PM
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sc_gardener(zone 5)

"Hella Lacey', that have yet to bloom for me" yep have heard this about this variety from others too. I had the same experience, have moved it 3x into more and more sun. I think this one needs a LONG blooming season to get the flowers. Zone 5 does not bloom. To bad, it is a nice large sized purple.

My favorite, purple dome. Nice and tidy and smaller. Alma Potske is very large, floppy and hot pink. I like her as well.

also you may want to look into Boltonia which is either white or light pink and tall.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2011 at 10:42AM
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